'Silent Hill': A Town That Should Be Avoided
Creating blockbuster hits from video games has worked out-sometimes. But just because "Lara Croft Tombraider" and "Resident Evil" succeeded doesn't necessarily mean the pattern should be continued with "Silent Hill". The approximately two-hour-long movie seemed a day-long nightmare while demons ruled the earth as ashes fell like constant snow and an attractive cop in skin-tight leather pants attempted to save lives.
Adapted from the popular video game, "Silent Hill" opens as Rose DaSilva (Radha Mitchell) has a daughter named Sharon (Jodelle Ferland), who suffers from an unknown illness that causes her to have nightmares and say "Silent Hill." In an attempt to cure her daughter by bringing her face to face with those fears, Rose takes her to the abandoned town of Silent Hill. On the way to Silent Hill, Rose awakes after a car accident to find Sharon missing.
The film then follows Rose searching for her daughter and encountering demons, ghosts, insects and everything in between. The quiet town she envisioned is more like hell on earth. Fires constantly burn underground, causing ashes to fall like snow. The somewhat interesting introduction quickly comes to an end as the storyline fails to deliver midway. Sudden blackouts and scenes of bloodthirsty creatures repeat but go nowhere, except towards further confusion.
Suddenly, the film becomes much more than a quest for a little girl. It is a portrayal of a witch hunting cult, religious fundamentalism and a ridiculous group of controlled people terrified of a little demon child bent on revenge. Ironically, the leaders in the movie, be they Rose, the cult leader, a police officer or the little child, are all powerful women.
In a scene towards the end the whole movie is explained in a matter of five minutes, which makes you question why they even bothered with the rest of the film. The chilling final scene attempts to save the movie but also raises many more questions.
In spite of the confusion created throughout the film, the ending leaves you thinking again about what is going on, but at least this time in a good way. The best part of the movie may well be the visual and digital effects, which truly make you feel as if you're playing the video game on the big screen. The only difference is that you can't turn it off whenever you want. "Silent Hill" is a perfect example of a man granted far too much money to make an unnecessary movie that is far too long, when he could have used it for a good cause.